A New Mexico woman has filed a lawsuit against Hubble Contacts, claiming that she had to have her eye removed due to defective contact lenses sold by the company. Stephanie Guarisco of Clovis alleges that she experienced severe pain and injury after using the lenses for only a few weeks, ultimately resulting in the loss of her right eye. Guarisco is suing Hubble’s parent company, Vision Path, for negligence, consumer fraud, and other charges.
According to the lawsuit, Guarisco purchased the Hubble contact lenses through the company’s website in early 2020 and wore them until late July of the same year. She then experienced severe pain in her left eye, which led her to visit the emergency room. An optometrist later diagnosed her with iridocyclitis, an inflamed iris condition. Guarisco was subsequently diagnosed with a corneal ulcer in her left eye. Her eye issues worsened, and she sought medical attention for allergy-like symptoms in her right eye, including discharge, redness, itching, and visual disturbances. She was diagnosed with a corneal ulcer in her right eye and reported decreased vision.
Despite undergoing several surgeries to repair the ulcer, Guarisco’s vision could not be restored, and she now has a permanent prosthetic in her right eye socket. The lawsuit claims that Hubble contact lenses are made using Methafilcon A, a silicone-based polymer that many optometrists consider inappropriate for making contact lenses due to its insufficient oxygen supply to the eye. While the lenses are approved by the FDA, the lawsuit argues that Methafilcon A is an inferior material no longer prescribed for contact lenses in the United States.
The complaint also accuses Vision Path of failing to follow proper procedures for verifying customer prescriptions and paying customers for positive reviews of the lenses on its website. Vision Path has stated that it takes the allegations seriously and has initiated an internal investigation.
Founded in 2016, Vision Path sells Hubble branded contact lenses online through a mail-order subscription model. Guarisco’s lawsuit is not the company’s first legal trouble. In January 2022, Vision Path paid a $3.5 million settlement to the Federal Trade Commission for various violations, including failing to obtain proper optometrist prescriptions for customers’ contact lenses. The company also paid a settlement in Texas last June for deceptive marketing practices.
The lawsuit serves as a reminder of the importance of using safe and approved contact lenses and following proper procedures for obtaining prescriptions.